What is it?
ECONMED is an electronic bilingual (ESP/ENG) listserv managed and moderated by the Medicines and Technology Unit (MT) within the Area of Health Systems Based on Primary Care (HSS). It constitutes yet another effort by MT, and by extension the Organization, to simultaneously contribute to the visibility of those factors currently shaping the main challenges to guarantee universal access to medical products and keep on feeding the information flow and exchange among member States and other relevant actors.
In its one-year existence ECONMED has revealed itself as a cost-effective tool for, among other functions, keeping the institutional bond between face-to-face meetings (and follow up on them) and reporting to the Member States on the progress of certain projects (regional bank of prices) and given activities (impact assessment of CAFTA DOR agreement within the implementation of the Global Strategy and Plan of Action on Public Health, Innovation, and Intellectual Property (GSPA) in the Americas, through the Regional Perspective.
Why was it created?
Setting up and in motion ECONMED was one of the demands among the conclusions of the First International Seminar on Economic Regulation of the Drug jointly organized between PAHO and Brazil’s National Agency for Health Surveillance (ANVISA).
ECONMED’s creation lays upon the need for countering one of the main features (and difficulties for public health authorities) of pharmaceutical markets both at the sub regional and regional levels: the acute deficit of reliable and impartial information of good quality on prices of medical products and other essential factors for the planning, designing and execution of efficient and effective pharmaceutical policies.
Who can participate?
ECONMED is, for the time being, a tool reserved exclusively for public officials from the health sector (ministries, research centers, associated institutions, etc…) although the participation of other actors is encouraged: institutes of intellectual property, specialized agencies, etc...
At the moment (May 2010) nearly 170 individuals from Regulatory Authorities, Ministries of Health and other institutions participate in ECONMED distributed among 28 countries. It is sought, both in the composition of the list and in the distribution of materials that the diversity of our America is being adequately represented.Objectives ECONMED is currently trying to build up opportunities for the dialogue and create spaces for the exchange of information and best practices between national actors both at the regional and sub regional scale. It is intended to facilitate the conditions to promote the sharing of experiences and disseminations of materials centered on the economic and legal regulation of medical products and the overall health situation of the region.
In the mid-term ECONMED seeks to contribute towards the creation of collaborative networks in the region while supporting the effort of the Regional Platform on Innovation, Access, and Pharmaceutical Policies as well as the consolidation of the Regional Bank of Prices. It is, in short, an integrating element of efforts and processes.
ECONMED does not exist without the people (and associated institutions) that compose it and actively participate in the transmission and exchange of t information. Active involvement of all ECONMED participants is critical for an optimal use of the list in order to achieve the ultimate goal of such an instrument: going beyond the current unilateral distribution of information, basis for the access to knowledge gap hurting our region.
With flexible periodicity ECONMED expresses itself mainly through four elements, with only one of them of exclusive access for registered members:
Papers and academic contributions published in specialized and peer-reviewed journals on subjects of interest for the region and related to ECONMED’s raison d’être produced by individuals (academics or health professionals) of the Americas.
(link to article)
Set of information generated by the Secretariat of ECONMED
Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization